A few more stories into the book,I could visibly feel my pulse soaring. The strange world Murakami concocted with every single story made me want to read on.I started appreciating the point of all the pointless details he was getting into in the stories. The philosophizing and dark overtones actually started growing on me and I found myself reaching for the book in between chores. Yes,the book is deeply disturbing. Yes,sometimes the plots seemed outright absurd and innane. But, the stories brim with originality.I don’t think I have read any compilation of short stories that has the range this book has. Simply superb!. Murakami draws heavily from his love for Jazz and quite a few stories mention obscure Jazz artists and even more obscure records. Paul Gauguin finds mention a few times too.
A word of caution though-if you don’t tend to take kindly to depressing books,you might find a strange sense of gloom settling over you as you thumb through the book.The protagonists in the stories are either depressed or indulging in affairs or suicidal or sad or confused. Doesn’t entirely make for a wholesome or happy reading.But the visual imagery invoked by the stories is so potent that the words take your breath away. There is a huge degree of truth to most observations Murakami makes. I just wonder how it would have been to read the book in Japanese.Alas,I’ll never know,unless I decide to learn the language.
A full on 5/5 for this exhilarating piece of work! I know I’ve mentioned “exhilarating “a few times in this post,but that’s exactly how i felt reading the book. Go grab it !